Online green corporate governance network

September 13, 2007 at 3:00 am Leave a comment

Kim photo of Thai bowlsOkay, this week I admit I’ve been a bit introspective pondering the English language, cemeteries and heroes, so time for a change of pace. I just had a week’s holiday and for once decided to stay at home rather than schlepping overseas. This resulted in time to read and contemplate, hence the posts of the last few days.

So…..today’s post is something pretty interesting to me and anyone interested in global warming-related corporate social responsibility issues. GreenMachines.net has just launched the internet’s first green corporate governance network – a social network with the mission of helping to turn climate-related corporate decision-making into a public process so that the technological and economic power of business corporations is focused on the fight against global warming.

There are four online discussion areas on the network:

  • The Whistle: looks at whether particular corporations are violating laws designed to reduce greenhouse gas emission. Whistleblower protection is provided by Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), 549 U.S. __ (2007), in which the US Supreme Court gives the EPA authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from the tailpipes of new motor vehicles – meaning that the United States Supreme Court has found that carbon dioxide is a “pollutant” within the meaning of the Clean Air Act and the Court’s reasoning applies equally to other greenhouse gases. So anyone who thinks a company is violating the Clean Air Act by unlawfully emitting greenhouse gases can report the violation on the network.
  • The Long View: an area for discussing carbon footprint-reducing investments that corporations can make to develop or implement carbon dioxide (“CO2″) capture and/or sequestration technologies.
  • Value-Added: here the network can share information about the steps a company can take to develop or implement CO2 capturing or sequestering technologies or find information on how to publish a Corporate Sustainability Report.
  • Deconstruction Zone: an area to discuss and highlight the accuracy of a company’s Corporate Environmental Responsibility Reports or other green PR.

All four forums are moderated and anyone can join. Under New Posts, I found a whole lot of stuff on court cases involving non-compliant companies; companies that are seen as having the greenest tech brands; what specific companies like Wells Fargo and Chevron are doing around sustainability; and a link to measuring and managing corporate carbon footprints.

Quite timely really given the recent article in The Economist. US economist, Robert Reich’s new book, Supercapitalism, denounces CSR as a dangerous diversion that is undermining democracy. Reich has apparently had a Damascene conversion and following many years of preaching the CSR gospel, now believes that companies cannot be socially responsible and that CSR activitists need to focus on getting Governments to solve social problems. He debunks many CSR arguments and maintains that socially responsible companies are not necessarily more profitable and that many companies are using CSR as a propaganda tool to fool the public into thinking that problems are being addressed.

I suspect a good cat fight will erupt over this book – check out the overview of the book in The Economist article.

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Entry filed under: Carbon footprint, Carbon offsetting, Climate Change, Corporate Governance, Corporate Social Responsibility, Education and Awareness, Environment, Social networks, Sustainability, Useful resources. Tags: .

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